Fred's Rivertown Alehouse

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Fred's Rivertown AlehouseFred's Rivertown Alehouse
Very Good
Fred's Rivertown AlehouseFred's Rivertown Alehouse

Type: Bar, Eatery

1114 First Street
Snohomish, Washington, 98290
United States

(360) 568-5820 | map

None provided.

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User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 7 | Ratings: 9
Photo of BCross
3.23/5  rDev -18.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

I have been going to Freds for the last 7 years and would love to give it a better review, but just cant. While they have like 32 beers on tap, most of them never get changed out. On occasion they will have some great beers, most of the time I have to really look for something new and or different. Wish they would rotate out the taps more often.
Food is average at best, and on the pricey side for what you get.

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Photo of hopburster
3.78/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

Fred's is my local alehouse and I've been going there once or twice a week form the past 13 obviously I like the place and am glad to have it in a town the size of Snohomish.

With that in mind, here's my review:

Beer: 32 taps...usually a decent selection. But can be hit or miss if you are looking to drink something unusual---sometimes you can be blown away to walk in and drink a two year old Abyss, some fresh Blue Dot, or something from Walking Man; other time the list is pretty run of the mill...Fat Tire, Mac & Jacks, etc. They host regular brewer nights which can be fun and usually have a Jubel Ale fest around Xmas where they serve 3 or 4 vintages of the Deschutes holiday favorite.

Atmosphere: Nice cozy bar in the heart of historic Snohomish. Brick walls and a big wooden bar. The kind of place that actually feels like a bar. Gets crowded at times and can be hard to find a place to sit, especially at dinnertime or Friday/Saturday nights.

Food: OK...but overpriced in my opinion...but then again, I don't usually go there for the food!

Also have a great selection of Scotch, if that's your thing.

All in all, a nice, friendly local pub with a decent selection of beer on tap...something you don't see that much of north of Seattle.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I've been to Fred's Rivertown Alehouse a couple of times, most recently today. My wife and I hit the place around 1:30 in the afternoon so they weren't too busy; I know on Saturday nights they can get crazy.

The place is decorated up with tap handles and scotch bottles, so you know it's a quality local. They had advertisements for beer and scotch events coming up in June and July, which I rather appreciate. Overall, a solid friendly-neighborhood-pub feeling.

I had a couple of pints of Northwest micros (Maritime Pacific and Fremont Brewing) from their list of about 25 taps; they also had a few bottled imports, mostly popular-but-good stuff like Chimay and Köstritzer. In the dining area, each table had a list of all their available beers, saving me from having to squint and guess at the tap handles across the room.

My wife and I also had lunch there, and we were favorably impressed by both their fish & chips and their burgers. I am looking forward to driving up to Snohomish again in the next few weeks to sample more of their menu; it's a little pricey, but I think it's worth it.

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Photo of dirtbikejunkie
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

EDIT: 07/13/2010 I have updated the scoring on my review to reflect the last few visits to Fred's. Beer has been good and no issue with freshness/quality experienced in the past.

I live in Monroe, WA and Fred's is the closest beer bar, or the only beer bar, without driving to Seattle. I go here often, but every time I leave bummed but have no choice but to return again and hope for the best.

My main complaint is every time I've been to Fred's there is an off taste with each beer I have tried. The last visit (few weeks ago) I sampled Chimay and had a glass of a local pale, both had the same off flavor to them. My wife sampled a beer and had a glass of another and the result was the same. I don't know what the issue is, but the beer always has had this off taste to me at Fred's. Each time I hope to hit a beer that is fresh and tastes correct, but so far no luck.

I find this main complaint EXTREMELY disappointing because Fred's has a pretty decent selection and many times cellared beers not even found in Seattle.

The food on the other hand is more consistent. It's sometimes a miss, but more often then not the dishes are good. Nothing to write home about, but for the area it's above average especially given the price.

Usually service is good. Seems to be a lot of turn over with employees and I've been on nights that are short on servers.

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Photo of wingedeel
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Fred's Rivertown Alehouse is a very nice stop. Comfortable bar/dining area, with ample seating. Service was friendly and efficient.

Very nice selection of NW brews, as well as Chimay and a few other imports on tap. Chimay was served in its proper glassware. They also had on our visit a 2002 Jubelale from Deschutes on tap which was quite interesting.

Just had appetizers to eat, the black bean nachos were fine, and the order was huge.

A worthwhile stop if you find yourself in the area. Location is good, being right downtown by all the antique shops.

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Photo of freed
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Recently visited a friend in Snohomish and we had the chance to visit Fred's twice. The location in downtown fits nicely into the idyllic main street and the pub itself is slightly darker than a normal "family" public house. The darkness is rather a nice feature and doesn't obscure the brewerina and whiskey paraphernalia on the walls. The bar is quite lovely with it's rows of single-malt and a very generous row of tap handles lining the interior, but the TV really detracts from the otherwise calming and healing effect that a pub has on its draw. The contrast of sharp-pictured LCD screens in a pub is kind of ironic. Luckily, the sound was off and instead a rather nice rotation of music plays.

The selection of beers is really quite impressive no matter where you're from. There were very few "normal" craft brews on tap the two nights I visited, and they even have a beer on cask on occasion. It was off the night I was there, and the tender suggested the beer wasn't worth being on cask and was maybe a little old. The first server/bartender was very outgoing, knowledgeable and honest and we had several great beers, all served in their appropriate glasses, and all fresh and delicious. Service was excellent the first night. The second night it was different staff, and while it was far from bad, it just wasn't as great.

We had some food both nights and it was on par for most pub fare. The reuben was good, and the waffle-cut fries really tasty.

Again on the selection. My friend tried to explain that the place had great selection, but it wasn't until I saw the list myself that I fully appreciated it. There were beers from all over the northwest and even a few great imports from the UK and Belgium. Add to that a wicked selection of scotch and you've got a wonderful place for barley-junkies. A reader board in the back said that they were doing a Brewer Appreciation type night where they focus on a single brewer and have the brewer on hand when available. I love this type of event because it's great to put a person with their craft.

This place is really a great pub an worth a stop if you're in the area.

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Photo of WaywardSeaman
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I flew out to Seattle for a weekend to attend a seminar in Monroe, and had dinner and a few beers at Fred's in nearby Snohomish. I decided to stop in based on Fred's four-star rating in The Beer Lover's Guide to the USA; only 21 bars in the country received this highest rating, including such classics (in my mind) as the Map Room, the Toronado, the Horse Brass, and Redbones.

The atmosphere was a low-key brewpub kind of vibe. The place was hopping; all the tables were full, but there were a few open stools at the bar. The tap list had roughly 30 beers; I'm no longer hip to the Northwest beer scene, so I studied the list before deciding on a Diamond Knot IPA. Fred's has an impressive scotch list, too, for those interested.

I wasn't super hungry, so I ordered the black bean nachos from the appetizer menu; it took forever to arrive, but the portion was huge, almost more than I could eat. The menu didn't have much in the way of vegetarian entrees, so it's good that the nachos were so filling. I enjoyed a Black Butte Porter with dinner; it's one of my all-time favorites, and something I can't get in the Midwest, but I felt guilty that nothing else on the tap list piqued my interest.

So while my dinner and beers were great, I left feeling a bit disappointed. Based on past visits to Seattle, it's not at all necessary to go this far afield from the city to find good beer. My opinion of the place might be better if it hadn't been so busy and there was cask beer flowing from the two handpumps, but I'm not so sure Fred's still deserves that four-star rating.

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Fred's Rivertown Alehouse in Snohomish, WA
Place rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 9 ratings